Child Relocation For Military Families

by | Military Family Law

Child relocation poses substantial emotional challenges for families, and this is especially true for military families. The intricacies and hardships linked to the relocation process are accentuated due to frequent deployments, transitions, housing changes, and school shifts. 

In this blog, we will delve into the distinct challenges military families encounter in child relocation, and we’ll provide advice on how to streamline the logistics, ensure emotional stability, and protect the rights and well-being of children in these circumstances. We’ll also highlight the importance of accessing the support and resources available within the military community to assist in this transition.

How To Deal With A Relocation Request For Military Child Custody Cases In Las Vegas

This is another installment in my series examining the intricate ways in which military service can influence child custody and divorce cases in Las Vegas. In a prior post, we explored the legal protection afforded to military personnel while deployed. In this article, we will delve further into the legal considerations involved in determining whether a child can relocate outside Las Vegas. This situation may arise when the civilian parent intends to return to their home state or when the military parent faces a transfer, emphasizing the critical importance of the child’s education, healthcare, and overall well-being. We’ll also discuss how the court assesses child custody status, parenting plans, custody orders, child support, and the role of divorce attorneys in these matters, as family care plans and legal protection come into play during this decision-making process.

But first you need to know the general considerations in custody with regards to military service stated in NRS 125C.0647.

When it comes to a relocation case when the parents are sharing custody, it becomes necessary for one of the parents to request permission when moving a child or children out of a state which is part on NRS 125C.0065. This applies to a military person that has received a request for a change of their current station (permanent), or when the civilian parent wants to move back to another state where they will be closer to family and friends. When the non-moving parent is not prepared to provide permission so that the child can move, the relocating parent would need to ask a court to permit them.

In these situations, the parent that is relocating would need to prove to the appropriate court that in their personal capacity they have adequate grounds to be given primary custody and that the relocation would serve the best interests of the child. The objecting or non-moving parent can then reply to the courts that it is not in the best interests of the child and that the custody should not be changed. The courts will make the decision on whether the child can move with the relocating parent or stay with the objecting parent.

To know more in filling for a petition to relocate read onNRS 125C.007.

Similar to other types of relocation cases, when it comes to military relocation cases, the courts take into account different factors that serve the best interests of the child. These usually include the education opportunities available to the child when moving to another area, if their quality-of-life will improve, whether they will have more access to family members, and so on.

In matters of child relocation, the courts play a pivotal role in determining a multitude of crucial factors. They assess the relationships between the parents, examining whether the relocating parent is inclined to foster and nurture the child’s relationship with the non-moving parent. Additionally, the court considers the quality of the child’s relationship with each parent. In cases involving older children, the judge often takes into account the child’s own preferences and wishes.

When one or both parents are active members of the military, and one parent intends to relocate, the judge may weigh additional factors. This includes addressing the crucial issue of childcare when a military parent holds primary custody and is subsequently deployed. The absence of nearby relatives near the military parent’s current installation can present formidable challenges.

In situations like these, it is imperative for both parents to collaborate, ideally through their respective divorce attorneys, to devise a compromise that accommodates the military parent’s ability to spend time with their child while still aligning with the civilian parent’s work obligations and opportunities. This compromise should encompass considerations such as the child’s education, healthcare, and overall well-being, making sure that the child custody status, parenting plan, custody order, child support, and family care plan are designed with the child’s best interests in mind. Ultimately, what matters most is preserving the relationships and protection needed for the child, even in the face of a military parent’s deployment, ensuring that the child’s ability to maintain meaningful connections with both parents is upheld.

How Deployment Impacts Child Relocation Cases Involving Military Members

Deployment has a profound impact on child relocation cases involving military members. The consequences of a military member’s deployment in such cases are far-reaching and complex, affecting not only the logistics but also the emotional well-being of the children and all parties involved. Here are five significant impacts:

1. Legal Complexities

Deployment often gives rise to various legal complexities, especially concerning child custody and visitation rights. The physical absence of a service member due to deployment can present intricate challenges in defining the child’s primary residence and visitation schedules, potentially leading to disagreements and legal proceedings.

Courts are tasked with navigating the distinctive circumstances imposed by military duty when reaching decisions on child custody issues, often requiring adjustments to standard custody agreements or visitation provisions. State laws may play a crucial role in determining how such situations are handled, making it imperative for military service members to plan accordingly and seek legal assistance to ensure everything is in place to safeguard custody rights and visitation arrangements in the event of deployment.

2. Emotional Strain

When a parent is deployed, children must face an extended separation. This situation introduces considerable emotional strain, which can be overwhelming and disruptive. Children frequently grapple with emotions such as anxiety, loneliness, and the absence of a familiar source of support. Dealing with the emotional consequences of deployment poses a significant challenge for both the children and the custodial parent.

To address these emotional issues and ensure the children’s well-being during this challenging time, it is essential to consider the child custody arrangements and child custody agreements in place, seeking counseling or support services when necessary.

3. Uncertainty and Instability

The unpredictability of deployment schedules and the possibility of receiving last-minute orders add a layer of uncertainty and instability to the equation. Families often encounter the need to make quick relocation decisions or adapt their existing custody and visitation arrangements.

These moves can disrupt the child’s established sense of stability and routine, necessitating swift adjustments to child custody agreements and potentially placing a burden on family law attorneys who must navigate the legal processes and jurisdiction issues involved in ensuring the best interests of the child amidst these changes.

4. Community and Support Services

In cases involving military families, the support services offered within the military community play a crucial role, particularly during deployments. Nevertheless, when relocation becomes necessary as a result of deployment, accessing these services can become more complex, which affects the availability of resources and assistance, which is crucial for ensuring a smoother transition for children.

Therefore, it is paramount for military families to actively seek, use, and maximize these resources effectively, considering the best interests of the children, in compliance with child custody laws, child custody arrangements, and any applicable child custody agreements. This responsibility, burden, and interest must remain at the forefront of their minds as they navigate the processes and agreements related to this issue, keeping safety, responsibility, and the child’s custody status in mind.

In addition, engaging family law attorneys and divorce attorneys, and, when necessary, obtaining the consent and proof of family members, including grandparents and step-family members, can be a vital provision to address the complexities and challenges associated with custody arrangements, ensuring that the mission of safeguarding the child’s welfare and best interests remains the number one priority.

5. Long-Term Effects

The ramifications of deployment in child relocation cases can extend beyond the deployment period. The emotional and psychological effects on the children may endure even after the deployed parent’s return, potentially impacting future relationships and family dynamics. It is imperative to acknowledge that the encounters and emotional strains of deployment can imprint lasting effects on a child’s well-being, influencing their ability to adapt, their educational needs, and their relationships with family members and their healthcare and education needs.

These aspects matter most when considering the child’s custody status, and it is crucial to address them in any custody agreement or parenting plan. Additionally, seeking guidance from a divorce attorney or family care plan during the deployment hearing can provide protection and legal support, ensuring the child’s well-being is the top priority.

In essence, deployment has a profound impact on child relocation cases within the realm of military members, bringing forth a multifaceted interplay of factors, including legal, emotional, logistical, and community-related aspects.

Successfully navigating these complexities demands thoughtful deliberation, strategic planning, and, when warranted, the guidance of a divorce attorney to safeguard the well-being of the children involved. It is of the utmost importance for military families to proactively address these matters, leveraging the resources and support services at their disposal to foster a more seamless and emotionally resilient transition during relocations linked to deployment.

This ensures that the child’s education, healthcare, and overall needs, as well as their child’s custody status and parenting plan, receive the necessary protection and consideration, ultimately preserving the most critical thing in these situations: the child’s relationships and emotional well-being.

Tips for a Smoother Child Relocation

Here are some valuable tips and insights to ensure a smoother child relocation process, addressing the unique needs and considerations of military families. Whether you are navigating a deployment-related move or any other relocation within the military context:

1. Plan Ahead

Effective planning is crucial for a seamless child relocation within military families. The more comprehensive your preparation, the smoother the transition will be. This process encompasses alerting key parties, including schools, healthcare providers, and the child’s educational and social network, well before the move.

This proactive approach not only minimizes disruptions but also ensures that the child’s educational and healthcare requirements are met promptly and efficiently. It’s a critical step in safeguarding the child’s well-being, custody status, and overall stability in the face of the transfer, underlining the significance of thoughtful preparation in military child relocation matters.

2. Seek Legal Counsel

Seeking advice from a family law attorney specializing in military family matters holds immense significance. These legal professionals possess an in-depth comprehension of the intricate aspects of child custody, visitation rights, and child support, especially in cases involving a military family member. They can provide expert guidance throughout the legal proceedings, assuring the protection of your child’s rights and best interests. This is particularly crucial during deployments, relocations, and the complex legal matters that may arise.

3. Use Military Resources

Military bases provide various resources tailored to support families in addressing the unique challenges of relocations. These resources encompass relocation assistance programs, counseling services, and support networks that cater to the needs of both parents and children. Harnessing these specialized military resources is essential for offering guidance and support throughout the relocation journey, facilitating the adjustment to a new environment.

These resources are particularly crucial in matters related to schools, education, healthcare, child custody status, child support, custody agreements, parenting plans, family care plans, and other aspects that matter most to military families during a relocation.

Additionally, they serve as protection and support systems for maintaining relationships, property, and the overall well-being of family members when one party, often the military spouse, undergoes a deployment or transfer, emphasizing the importance of utilizing these resources to the best of one’s ability.

4. Stay Connected

In today’s digital age, staying connected with loved ones, regardless of geographical distance, has become more accessible. It is crucial to foster your child’s relationships with friends and family through various communication channels like video calls, social media, and email. This ensures your child remains connected and maintains a sense of continuity with their existing support system, a vital thing in times of relocations and custody matters, especially for military families, veterans, and soldiers.

5. Promote Resilience

Instill in your children the importance of resilience and adaptability. The constant transfer of schools and the distance between family members can be a challenging thing to handle. However, by emphasizing the positive aspects of each relocation, such as new educational opportunities and adventures, you can aid them in cultivating crucial life skills.

Resilience and adaptability are not only vital in the context of military life. Still, they are qualities that will greatly benefit them in various matters, from their child custody status to their relationships and their overall ability to navigate life’s menu of challenges.

6. Create Stability

Amidst the frequent relocations and the inherent changes that come with them, it is imperative to establish routines and rituals that offer a stabilizing influence on your children. Familiar practices and steadfast schedules play a crucial role in assisting them in feeling secure during transitions, even amidst the distance and unpredictability of military life. This sense of stability is a steadfast anchor, particularly in the face of numerous other adjustments triggered by relocations, deployments, and evolving circumstances.

In ensuring your child’s well-being, these practices are among the things that matter most, along with considerations like education, healthcare, child custody status, parenting plans, custody agreements, child support, legal protection, and the support of a spouse or divorce attorney where necessary.

As a family law attorney in Las Vegas, I have worked with many military families. Contact me today should you have concerns or questions about child relocation out of Nevada.

For more information on how (702) 387-4014, or visit us here:

Huggins Law Office

8683 West Sahara Avenue #180 Las Vegas, NV 89117

(702) 387-4014

Las Vegas Military Child Custody Lawyer